Cytogenetic and molecular analysis of an unusual case of acute promyelocytic leukemia with a t(15;17;17)(q22;q23;q21).
We present a 52-year-old female with a clinical history of acute myelocytic leukemia, probable acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL). Flow cytometry results were somewhat unusual. Specifically, the promyelocytic population showed partial positivity for antigens not usually expressed in APL (HLA-DR and CD117). The interpretation of these results was that the abnormal population contained a proportion of very early promyeolocytes that had not completely lost all their "precursor" antigens. Cytogenetic analysis of a bone marrow aspirate showed a t(15:17;17)(q22;q23;q21) in all cells analyzed. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) analysis using the PML-RARA DNA probe showed a positive signal pattern (fusion) in 100% of 200 total interphase and metaphase cells examined, confirming the presence of the PML-RARA rearrangement. Multicolor FISH, which produces 24 colors to differentiate all chromosomes in a single hybridization, was applied. This study confirmed the cytogenetic interpretation of the rearrangement. No material from any other chromosome was detected on the second smaller derivative chromosome 17. Additional studies using the RARA(17q21) break-apart DNA FISH probe showed that 17q21 (RARA) was not rearranged on the derivative chromosome 17 that received the q22-->qter segment from chromosome 15. The RARA locus on the smaller derivative 17 was the allele involved in the fusion in this three-way rearrangement. The signal pattern was consistent in 100% of interphase and metaphase cells scored. This unusual t(15;17;17) prompted us to investigate further using reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction with primers from the 3' and 5' regions of both the RARA and PML loci. These studies showed that the PML-RARA fusion was present, but the complementary fusion RARA-PML, which is usually detectable, was absent. The patient is responding well to standard treatment protocols.
Tirado, CA; Golembiewski-Ruiz, V; Horvatinovich, J; Moore, JO; Buckley, PJ; Stenzel, TT; Goodman, BK
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